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The personal papers of Philip Godsal, carriage manufacturer, have been preserved in a remarkable archive which includes a diary which he maintained for37 years with every item of his personal expenditure. Previously unpublished, these papers allow the first extensive modern study of the "mystery" of coachmaking, and they provide an intimate portrait of a man and his business, his family and friends, and the world in which they lived. His circle of acquaintances ranged from the Prince of Wales, to whose Masonic lodge he belonged, the Prime Minister, William Pitt who was his customer, the actress Mrs Abington, from whom he bought a house, to Henry Fauntelroy, whom he sponsored as a freemason and who was hanged for forgery."